Not sure anyone’s thoughts,but i see no problems with ‘breaking bread’ with Buddhists. They believe in non violence compassion, love thy enemy, meditation reflection, prayer etc. Thomas Merton saw this, he knew what connected the Buddhists and Catholics. There is a lot to be learned from Buddhists and I for one welcome as much compassion as possible.
“Solitude is a way to defend the spirit against the murderous din of our materialism.”
― Thomas Merton
sometimes it seems to me it is so hard for some people of certain faiths to talk to other people of different faiths. I love some of the ideas that Buddhism brings to the table, such as compassion, being in silence.
I’m not so sure about that. I for one haven’t had issues hanging out, chatting with, or whatever with people of other faiths. Granted, discussion of faith is not usually something that is brought up, but people can have fun and learn stuff from being around others of different faiths, cultures, and backgrounds. It allows us to grow as people and become compassionate human beings, something that Jesus knew as is obvious with who he would sometimes spend his time with, such as the tax collectors, prostitutes, and other people that were considered scum of society as well as the righteous, the poor and rich, everyone.
However, if one is to have discussions with others about faith among those of different faiths, it should be with those who can actually have discussions instead of shouting matches, and be able to learn something from the discussion, otherwise you lose instead of gain (knowledge, understanding, compassion, friendship, love, etc.)
I am friends with Buddhists, atheists, Hindus, and a guy who worships Anubis, the jackal-headed god of Egypt. There is nothing wrong with being friends and having conversations with all types of people. In particular, it is always a good opportunity to evangelize, if not by direct words, then by your demeanor and actions, bringing them the Light of Christ to shine for all to see.
This sounds great. Christianity teaches that all people are created in the image of God and are therefore worthy of respect. To honor them as friends, neighbors, co-workers, etc. is perfectly consistent with Christianity.
What is not consistent with Christianity, however, is to begin to erase the distinctives of Christianity over against Buddhism. A wise man once said, “The only way all religions can be equally true is if they are all equally wrong.”
Obviously, we should be open to having discussions with those of other faith communities. Obviously, we should not limit our friends to those in our own church. I must have missed something in your post.
BTW, Merton prayed with Buddhists. Contemplatives and monks ahve much less toruble with this than the folks in the pews.
I’m all those things listed except atheist. But as the scriptures say. Have no other gods before me. Anubis is secondary to me. I pray for his protection. I pray the St. Michael’s prayer too. If you understand hinduism Krishna very much reminds me of Jesus except Jesus came in flesh. Krishna never had a physical body nor aged. Nor died.
I take my meditations mainly from buddhism and my prayers are Catholic. But I also have differences within the church. I believe orthodox Catholicism teaches free will. Thomas Aquinas teaches things are predestoned by god’s provodence. The important thing is to stay in grace and not sin.
Merton was alright. He was a benefit to the Church. Although, I think he went to far in some of his views embracing to many non-Christian ideas. The priest that ran Hindu Ashrams came across to me like that too - I think his name is Bede?
Anyways… Buddhism has a very sophisticated metaphysical philosophy. But one ought bear in mind their are different branches of Buddhism. Some branches clearly believe in pentionary prayer and as with the Tibetans can be pretty superstitious having assimilated some of the regions paganism into Buddhism.
The Boddhistavas - called Dali Lamas in the Tibetan system - are similar conceptions of the Christian conception of Jesus Christ being God incarnate. And I’ve noticed this seems to be a male dominated thing among Buddhists.
I was searching in Buddhism - some years ago - for the equivalents (not superficial) of the Catholic female community of saints, and particularly with the historical female of equivalent status of the Virgin Mary (like the Our Lady of Guadalupe that Mexicans emblazon on their T-Shirts and cars).
In Japan Zen Buddhism seems to have taken a strong hold. Merton communicated in letters with a Japanese Zen Buddhist with a doctoral degree. Not to suggest Japanese Zen Buddhism is bad (I don’t think it is), I do think it’s worth noting Japanese Buddhism (practiced with Shintoism) did not soften the hearts of Japanese imperialism or the Japanese soldiers of WWII that could be quite cruel. The way these Buddhist soldiers treated the Chinese and the little babies they tossed on their bayonets for game and sport was quite evil. Japan also crucified a number of Christians some centuries ago.
Japanese Buddhism also has a long history of monks mentoring young boys they take in as homosexual lovers. They wrote poetry on this stuff I think. To them there was nothing immoral with either male-on-male sex or older men having sex with young boys. Older monks with young boys at that.
The huge drug addiction problem in predominately Buddhist Thailand also evidences Buddhism has not been able to create a paradise on earth among its own adherents.
Personally, I don’t believe in karma or reincarnation.